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The Williamson Tunnels

The Williamson Tunnels "The explanation most commonly offered [for the construction of the tunnels] is that having risen from humble beginnings, the rich retired merchant was touched by the poverty which pervaded the Edge Hill district and offered construction labour to the unemployed as a gesture of generosity"
posted by dhruva on Aug 2, 2005 - 10 comments

The Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Yale University's Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library's online collection of digital images - over 90,000 of them. A vast labyrinth of high resolution digital images and photo negatives from thousands of rare books and manuscripts. Search by keyword to access scans sorted by category. Find one you like and click on the call number to bring up all images from that title. Searching for "illustrations" brings up 31 pages of scans from hundreds of titles. Examine 16th century mechanical illustrations by Georg Agricola, two full pages of photo negatives from William Blake's Jerusalem, a collection of artwork demonstrating knightly protocol ("medieval" is another keyword search yielding a bonanza of good stuff), and so much more. The interface leaves something to be desired but the sheer amount of works available for viewing makes it all worth it.
posted by LeeJay on Aug 1, 2005 - 12 comments

Calling all Citizen-Historians

The Grande Vista Sanitarium (also known as the Belgum Sanitarium after its founder) has been in ruins for decades, Dr. Belgum having himself become a recluse after working so long in that isolated location. The East Bay Regional Park District, the site's owner since the 1970's, fails to mention the sanitarium in its online park history. InfoWorld columnist and mountain biker Chad Dickerson was the first to document these ruins on the web, and his #1 Google ranking turned him into a de facto authority. He uses the experience to kick off a meditation on how "citizen-journalists" might also become citizen-historians.
posted by expialidocious on Aug 1, 2005 - 9 comments

sea forts

The Maunsell Sea Forts: During the Second World War, three anti-aircraft forts were built in 1941-42 to protect the Thames Estuary, designed by Mr. G. A. Maunsell.
posted by dhruva on Aug 1, 2005 - 11 comments

Gnarly raspberry!

Hawaiian lava boarding (he'e holua) revival. History here and holua sleds/boards here.
posted by loquacious on Jul 26, 2005 - 16 comments

Das Kapital (of economic texts)

Archive for the History of Economic Thought
posted by Gyan on Jul 20, 2005 - 7 comments

Photomuse

Photomuse - a searchable (and growing [NYtimes]) collection of "masterwork photography" combining the collections of the George Eastman House and the International Center of Photography... [via]
posted by tpl1212 on Jul 20, 2005 - 3 comments

Old Newsfilter

Half-hanged Harding; Women of Pleasure; the Rape Master General; Haemorrhoides, Hernia, Bad Teeth and Other Ailments; the Rabbit Woman; Sew-Gelder Tries to Spay His Wife; Getting Rid of Bedbugs, and other Early Eighteenth Century Newspaper Reports.
posted by madamjujujive on Jul 18, 2005 - 14 comments

Sleeping with the fishes

The Last Days of NYC's Fulton Fish Market. A lovely, Mitchell-like paean to the odiferous old fish market that, like the rest of Manhattan, is being sanitized. Here's another, not quite as well done. Here's a great page of old articles and info. Don't like word pictures? Flikr has some really nice galleries. Forgotten New York has a tour of the area around the market. Or maybe you just want today's prices.
posted by CunningLinguist on Jul 14, 2005 - 24 comments

Happy Birthday, Metafilter!

Cat-Scan.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
posted by anastasiav on Jul 13, 2005 - 121 comments

Ancient Inventions

The Virtual Museum of Ancient Inventions, most of the discoveries and inventions on which modern societies have been constructed were made in prehistoric times. Ancient inventions tell detailed stories of complex knowledge for which no written records exist.
posted by nickyskye on Jul 12, 2005 - 13 comments

Tokyo Rose

"Now you fellows have lost all your ships. Now you really are orphans of the Pacific. How do you think you will ever get home?" Tokyo Rose was the name given to any female propaganda broadcaster for the Japanese during WWII’s battle for the Pacific, but it has stuck most tightly to Iva Toguri D'Aquino, an American who studied zoology at Berkeley and unwisely went to visit a relative in Japan in 1941 without a passport.

Her sultry voice was heard across the Pacific during her radio show “The Zero Hour,” which earned her about $7 per month. After the war, "Orphan Annie" returned to the U.S., where she was tried for treason in the most expensive trial in history. Her story has been made into movies and documentaries, and as of 2003 she was running a store in Chicago. You can listen to her broadcasts online and apparently even email her.
posted by gottabefunky on Jul 12, 2005 - 10 comments

Guns, Germs, Steel & the Boob Tube

"Guns, Germs & Steel" premieres tonight on PBS. Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book by Jared Diamond, and hosted by the same. The mini-series consists of three, one-hour episodes tackling many of the same issues in the book.
posted by jefgodesky on Jul 11, 2005 - 56 comments

The Smash of Civilizations

'...Today, such famous sites as the Assyrian capital of Nineveh, the ziggurat at Ur, the temple precinct at Babylon, and a ninth-century spiral minaret at Samarra have been scarred by violence, while equally important ancient sites, particularly in the southern provinces, are being ravaged by looters who work day and night to fuel an international art market hungry for antiquities. Historic districts in urban areas have also suffered from vandalism, looting, and artillery fire. In response to such widespread damage and continuing threats to our collective cultural heritage and the significance of the sites at risk, World Monument Fund has taken the unprecedented step of including the entire country of Iraq on its 2006 list of 100 Most Endangered Sites.'
The 2003- Iraq War & Archaeology
The Smash of Civilizations
posted by y2karl on Jul 8, 2005 - 11 comments

Invention Pioneers of Note

History of the Flame-broiled Burger! It's Flashy, it's Trashy, it's satirical, it's Fun-- it's The History Channel's Invention Pioneers of Note!
posted by Devils Rancher on Jul 6, 2005 - 4 comments

Trafalgar

Come into the Channel ... If you are only here for twenty-four hours, all will be over and six centuries of shame and insult will be avenged'. See you at Pompey tomorrow to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Trafalgar.
posted by TimothyMason on Jun 27, 2005 - 7 comments

the original web addiction.

"A fish, a barrel, and a smoking gun" -- ground zero of Web irony, Blog 1.0, the Picassos of the deflating hyperlink, Suck.com rocked. This is their history, as told by the promisingly named Matt Sharkey at keepgoing.org. (Suck's ex-editrix Cox is Wonkette and Terry Colon's art is everywhere. And God knows we could use a good Suck right about now.)
posted by digaman on Jun 26, 2005 - 61 comments

A Brief History of the Apocalypse

The sky is falling! From Romulus to Ronald Reagan: a comprehensive timeline of apocalyptic predictions. If you decide to put some stock in one or more of these prophecies, you may need to do some preparatory research.
posted by brundlefly on Jun 22, 2005 - 11 comments

RIP Hamilton Naki

RIP Hamilton Naki, the black surgeon working unrecognised behind the scenes at Christiaan Barnard's pioneering South African heart transplant.
posted by iffley on Jun 21, 2005 - 7 comments

Milestone Documents of U.S. History

100 Milestone Documents. High-quality viewable and downloadable documents of American History, from 1776 to 1965. Of course the usual suspects are available, but you can also see items like the Patent for the Cotton Gin (1794) and the Check for the Purchase of Alaska (1868). Also downloadable PDFs, transcripts, and background information on each document. (Warning: flash)
posted by marxchivist on Jun 18, 2005 - 14 comments

Save the Crap!!!!

If anyone wants to help Ron Gerber keep his fantastic radio archive up, go to his site. More info inside.
posted by wheelieman on Jun 18, 2005 - 8 comments

Green Alps?

A New Alpine Melt Theory: "The Alpine glaciers are shrinking, that much we know. But new research suggests that in the time of the Roman Empire, they were smaller than today. And 7,000 years ago they probably weren't around at all." Fascinating report from Der Spiegal about the "Green Alps" theory. This page has a small graphic showing the Alps today and how they might have looked in a warmer period. Another article here. Maybe Otzi forgot to pack his sunscreen?
posted by LarryC on Jun 18, 2005 - 9 comments

Eyewitness to History

American's censored Nagasaki A-bomb report unearthed after 60 years: The first reporter to reach Nagasaki following the August 1945 “Fat Man” atomic attack had his newspaper stories censored and banned by US General Douglas MacArthur’s office. The reporter, George Weller, who worked for the (defunct) Chicago Daily News, was prevented from reporting on a mysterious “Disease X” out of fear that the stories of radiation poisoning would horrify the world and shift public attitudes regarding the bomb.

Weller died two years ago. Carbons of the articles were discovered by his son, Anthony.

Four of them were published today for the first time by the Tokyo daily Mainichi Shimbun, which purchased them from Anthony Weller.
posted by zarq on Jun 17, 2005 - 83 comments

Visions of Vintage Americana

Uncommon Places brings to mind A Short History of America.
It must be all those wires.
Via Archphoto and The Crumb Museum

posted by y2karl on Jun 16, 2005 - 4 comments

Starbucks and the Revolution

Coffee Starbucks and the Revolution PDF
The Tatler. First post: April 12, 1709.
...wherein I shall from time to time report and consider all matters of what kind soever that shall occur to me, and publish such my advices and reflections every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday in the week for the convenience of the post. I have also resolved to have something which may be of entertainment to the fair sex...
posted by Tlogmer on Jun 11, 2005 - 10 comments

we only want the earth

"Our demands most moderate are , we only want the earth". Today is the birthday of James Connolly.
posted by sgt.serenity on Jun 4, 2005 - 39 comments

Scotsman Newspaper Digital Archive 1817-1950

Edinburgh's Scotsman newspaper has launched a digital archive covering all editions from 1817-1950. There are several stories with an American slant which may be something that interests you. There is coverage on such things as the hanging of the notorious bodysnatchers Burke and Hare. Unfortunately, after viewing the free archives it is a paysite, but I still think it's worth a look as there is easily a couple of hours of interesting reading on the free articles that are included. The set-up and look of this site is brilliant as well.
posted by ClanvidHorse on Jun 4, 2005 - 9 comments

Gode Cookery

Gode Cookery. A compilation of medieval recipes adapted for the 21st century kitchen. [via Monkeyfilter]
posted by jb on Jun 3, 2005 - 15 comments

"We could make this great land of ours a greater place to live"

"Approximately 250,000 persons viewed and passed by the bier of little Emmett Till. All were shocked, some horrified and appalled. Many prayed, scores fainted and practically all, men, women and children wept". Chicago Defender, September 1, 1955.
Federal officials this morning erected a white tent over the grave of Emmett Till in Alsip, Ill., in preparation to exhume the body to shed light on the Chicago teenager's death 50 years ago. Till, 14 years old at the time, was killed in a hate crime in Money, Miss., that sparked the Civil Rights movement. (previous Emmett Till MeFi threads here and here)
posted by matteo on Jun 1, 2005 - 5 comments

Scattered Leaves

Scattered Leaves In the early decades of the 20th century, a Cleveland book collector named Otto Ege removed the pages from 50 medieval manuscript books, divided the pages among 40 boxes, and sold the boxes around the world. Now the University of Saskatchewan plans to digitally remake the book.
posted by dhruva on May 28, 2005 - 32 comments

sexual politics

Sexuality, politics, and memory in Twentieth-Century Germany. The introductory chapter of Dagmar Herzog's brilliant, deeply researched, and beautifully written book, and an informative review by Thomas Laqueur. (via nextbook)
posted by semmi on May 27, 2005 - 7 comments

Scientific Americans

The US Postal Service has issued a series of postage stamps honoring great American scientists including: Josiah Willard Gibbs, thermodynamicist best known for the Gibbs Phase Rule; Barbara McClintock, geneticist who showed genes could transpose within chromosomes; John von Neumann, mathematician who made significant contributions in game theory and computer science; and Richard Feynman, infamous physicist best remembered for his work on quantum electrodynamics, the Manhattan Project, Feynman Diagrams, and his testimony at the Space Shuttle Challenger hearings.
posted by chicken nuglet on May 27, 2005 - 15 comments

Technological histories

Some technological histories - including Edison's Electric Pen, a History of the Atlantic Cable & Submarine Telegraphy, and Cox's 1907 Gold Changer.
posted by carter on May 23, 2005 - 1 comment

Chautauquas & Nascar

Chautauquas, and (as early as the 1830's) Lyceums, were perhaps America's first experiments in a truly Mass Culture. Everyone from this guy to this guy took the stage.
These days? Budweiser and Home Depot continue this fine American tradition.
Hey, at least its not a Medicine Show.
posted by gilgamix on May 22, 2005 - 9 comments

Morphine (not the band)

Happy Birthday Morphine!
As of tomorrow, Morphine celebrates 200 years of mellow. [via medgadget.com]
posted by lilboo on May 20, 2005 - 22 comments

Images of the American Civil War

Images of the American Civil War
posted by matteo on May 20, 2005 - 23 comments

Purloined Paper

A Yankee soldier stole North Carolina's copy of the Bill of Rights during the closing days of the Civil War in 1865. In March, 2003 the FBI seized the stolen copy in a sting operation. A court battle ensued, and one of the "investors" has not released his claim to the document. Recent developments make it look like it may be some time before this is settled. [more inside]
posted by marxchivist on May 20, 2005 - 20 comments

The Raiders of the Lost Ark

Raiders of the Lost Ark Dr. Vendyl Jones, the famed archaeologist, the inspiration for the “Indiana Jones” movie series, has spent most of his life searching for the Ark of the Covenant. The ark was the resting place of the Ten Commandments, given to the Jewish people at Mount Sinai, and was hidden just before the destruction of the First Temple. The Talmud says the Ark is hidden in a secret passage under the Temple Mount. Dr. Vendyl Jones says that the tunnel actually continues 18 miles southward, and that the Ark was brought through the tunnel to its current resting place in the Judean Desert. Apparently he is about to find it this summer.
posted by Coop on May 19, 2005 - 67 comments

Armenian Genocide Plagues Ankara 90 Years On

Armenian Genocide Plagues Ankara 90 Years On This weekend, Armenians commemorated the 90th anniversary of the genocide of 1915. But Turkey has yet to recognize the crime -- the first genocide of the 20th century. By refusing to use the word "genocide," Turkey could complicate its efforts to join the European Union.
posted by Postroad on May 18, 2005 - 11 comments

Tim Gracyk's amazing American Popular Music site

Buying Rare Race Records in the South. Music That Americans Loved 100 Years Ago. The Cheney Talking Machine. Just three among dozens of amazing articles about early recording machines and American popular music at the astonishingly detailed site of Tim Gracyk, author of Popular American Recording Pioneers: 1895-1925. Scroll down for bios of forgotten stars, including Nora Bayes - who performed in the Follies of 1907, before Flo Ziegfeld's name became part of the title, George W. Johnson - "the most important African-American recording artist of the 1890s," and piano player Zez Confrey, whose sheet music for the 1921 hit "Kitten on the Keys" sold over a million copies and became "the third most-frequently recorded rag in history."
posted by mediareport on May 17, 2005 - 39 comments

The dear green place?

Best laid schemes? Back in 1945 the Bruce Plan [click on images for video footage] was a radical proposal to knock down, and then rebuild, the Victorian centre of the city of Glasgow. The city’s slums* would be cleared; new towns* would be established; Glasgow would rise again, triumphant, once again the second city of the Empire*. In 1971*, there were grand visions of the Glasgow of the future; the Glasgow of tomorrow would be a bright, shining new city, and the Clyde* would once again be something to be proud of. A fascinating film archive of the Glasgow of the 20th century. *All links contain embedded video goodness.
posted by Len on May 17, 2005 - 13 comments

Broadsword calling Danny Boy

Channel 4's 100 Greatest War Films as voted for by their (generally more clued-up than average) viewership has plenty for you to disagree with, but much to recommend. Filmsite.org has a history of war films (as does Berkeley) for the completists among you. There are more war films from and about Vietnam and Indochina than you can shake a bayonet at (see also the 1999 NYT article, Apocalypse Then: Vietnam Marketing War Films to learn a little about the Vietnamese government's 1960s and 70s archive of war film). The [British] national archives have archived film from pre-WWI to the Cold War.
posted by nthdegx on May 17, 2005 - 74 comments

SAMMY: "That's democracy?"

"I am an American, so that is why I make films about America. America is sitting on our world, I am making films that have to do with America (because) 60% of my life is America. So I am in fact an American, but I can't go there to vote, I can't change anything. We are a nation under influence and under a very bad influence… because Mr. Bush is an asshole and doing very idiotic things."
Lars Von Trier introduces his new film at the Cannes Film Festival: «Manderlay» picks up where «Dogville» left off, with the character originated by Nicole Kidman -- now played by Bryce Dallas Howard -- stumbling onto a plantation that time forgot, where slavery still operates in the 1930s. The film (5 MB .pdf file, official pressbook) ends, as Dogville did, with David Bowie’s Young Americans played over a photomontage of images that range from a Ku Klux Klan meeting to the Rodney King beating, George Bush at prayer and Martin Luther King at his final rest, American soldiers in Vietnam and the Gulf, the Twin Towers. More inside.
posted by matteo on May 16, 2005 - 69 comments

Modernist design and architecture

Design Observer and the New York Times (reg. req'd) on modernism.
posted by Tlogmer on May 16, 2005 - 4 comments

Rebecca Protten and the origins of African American Christianity.

Rebecca's Revival. Rebecca Protten, born a slave in 1718, gained her freedom and joined a group of proselytizers from the Moravian Church. She embarked on an itinerant mission, preaching to hundreds of the enslaved Africans of St. Thomas, West Indies. Weathering persecution from hostile planters, Protten and other black preachers created the earliest African Protestant congregation in the Americas. University of Florida historian Jon Sensbach has written a book about Protten's life -- the interracial marriage, the trial on charges of blasphemy and inciting of slaves, the travels to Germany and West Africa. Later in her life, after she moved to Germany, Rebecca was ordained as a deaconess: "a former slave now administered Communion and practiced other claims to spiritual authority over white women, including European aristocrats." More inside.
posted by matteo on May 15, 2005 - 4 comments

Sometimes gentle persuasion needs a boost.

Mormons versus Indians. Once upon a time, Mormons and Shoshone didn't get along particularly well. Mormon cattle ate Shoshone grass. Shoshone took Mormon cattle as rent. Both sides were poor and sometimes barely able to feed themselves. Help was needed.

Chief Sagwich's Northwestern Band of Shoshone had their world shattered on January 23, 1863 when the US Army's 3rd California Volunteers under the leadership of a bitterly xenophobic Patrick E Connor, killed 250 of the 450 tribal members at the behest of Utah territorial officials to have the tribe disciplined. This slaughter, known as the Bear River Massacre, was the largest such mass killing of natives (even surpassing Wounded Knee) and the only official Civil War battle that took place in what is now Idaho.

The good chief survived along with about 90 of his tribe and, ten years later, converted to Mormonism along with all of his people. The tribe survives.
posted by DeepFriedTwinkies on May 12, 2005 - 8 comments

Encyclopedia of Chicago

The Encyclopedia of Chicago is now online and free, less than a year after being released in book form.
posted by me3dia on May 12, 2005 - 19 comments

Bolos, Ascots, Bandannas, The Steinkirk, Cravats, and Shih Huang Ti

Neckties Through The Ages
posted by anastasiav on May 10, 2005 - 10 comments

Dude, be prepared. Be that Boy Scout they won't let you be anymore.

The Uses of Canaries--and what canaries need to do --...Why go to all that trouble when we have reduced the homosexual, himself, to nothing more than a body part? Remove the homo -- he's just a diseased body part, after all -- and the problem is solved. Of course there will always be those so pathologically sex-panicked that they have to rely on their Think Pieces to get their pornography fix. Not worth worrying about, generally. But when United States Senators start in with the Depravity Fillip, and the DF starts showing up in the campaign literature of various groups... well, you want to keep your eye on that sort of thing. You maybe want to start thinking about that famous canary in the mine-shaft. ...
posted by amberglow on May 9, 2005 - 51 comments

History

Nobel winner GÜNTER GRASS about Germany on the anniversary of the end of WWII (NYT).
posted by semmi on May 7, 2005 - 28 comments

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